MARCH 16th MLAE-2011
We were maintaining heading 0° to Dickson and had 50 km left to go. Our “train” was driven by Vladimir Obihod. As we were crossing Cape Mys Efremov, a stretch of large hummocks and ridges crossed our path. Looking through his binoculars, Obihod saw a large and even field within about one kilometer from the shore and decided to drive on it. To the right he noticed an expanding crack in the ice. He came outside the vehicle and with the sticks of his ice pick checked its thickness. The ice was 25 centimeters thick and wet, but held the vehicle weight well. The crew was asleep. Vladimir woke everyone up and at the same time the crack began rapidly expanding and new cracks began to appear to in front and to the rear of us. It was the result of ocean tide. We attempted to move West – away from the shoreline we needed to eventually reach. Than we found the narrowest place (45m) to cross back to the east side. We inflated the boat, and got out the Kevlar rope. Sergey Isaev and Vladimir Yanochkin crossed over to the other side in the boat, tightened the rope and set up the crossing. In the mean time our mechanics inspected seal gaskets on the driveshafts. One of the had to be replaced, and while we worked on that, the ice floes came together allowing us to cross over driving. Temperature is at -30°C, it is nice and sunny. By 21:00 hours we reached Dickson arrived in Dickson to the warm welcome of the border guardsmen and old friends – Vladimir Demchuk, Valeriy Savin, Vladimir Krylov.
Coordinates on 21:00 MSK: N73° 30.438', E080° 31.131'.
Translated from Russian by Ilya Kovalev